News | October 31, 2006

Doctors' Morale Suffering, Survey Finds

Six of 10 doctors surveyed, upset about low reimbursement, red tape and long hours, said they’ve considered leaving the practice of medicine, according to the American College of Physician Executives.

About 70% of those physicians said they knew of at least one doctor who quit medicine because of “low morale.” The annual ACPE survey included responses from about 1,200 physicians. Fatigue was cited as the No. 1 problem by 77 percent of respondents. Emotional burnout was a close second at 66 percent. About 4 percent of physicians said they have had suicidal thoughts.

More than 300 physicians posted comments. Among them: “One thing that rarely gets mentioned is that, unlike other industries that are cyclical, the practice of medicine continually gets worse and worse, more intolerable, more onerous, with absolutely no hope or reason for any optimism either in the near or remote future."